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Vendetta Online 1.8.141-142

Two major updates in one week is a bit unusual for us. In this case, the earlier patch was a requirement for an upcoming OEM partner, so we wanted to be sure and get all the "big download" stuff, such as large textures, in that update. That way, in the time between now and when their product finally ships, the patch updates required for their users will be minimal (this is good for us, too, less pressure on our update servers).

Anyway.. on to the updates themselves:

VO 1.8.141, on Wedneday, was largely client-side:
- Enhanced textures for the stations, new normal and specularity maps.
- Improvements to detail textures on certain asteroids.
- More efficient texture memory utilization.

VO 1.8.142, tonight, was mostly server-side:
- Modified Hives: the Siepos hive now spreads through Serco territory, while the Prosus hive appears in the Itani region of space. Milanar presence continues in grayspace.
- Each hive now drops unique Milanar, Prosus and Siepos Neural Nodule items, which will factor into "manufacturing" driven gameplay down the road. These nodules are easily destroyed in combat, and as a result are only a 1-in-10 chance of dropping from most hive members. Only the Leviathan, with its larger neural array, is guaranteed to drop some nodules.. but not very many.
- Fixed hive problem relating to NPC mining ships attacking instead of mining.
- Fixed hive issue with bots not respawning in the Milanar hives.
- Frame limiter is now enabled by default, set to 120 frames per second.

The frame limiter being turned on by default should yield cooler-running machines for some of our newer players. A lot more changes to the Hive can be expected over the coming months. Now that they're broken out into three separate definitions on the developer side, it's relatively easy for us to add a lot more gameplay specific tweaks. I intend for each Hive to be somewhat unique, eventually in looks as well as behaviour. Different AI, different weapons, different assortments of ships, and different drops. Some of these drops will then factor into various Manufacturing (crafting) roles that I'm planning to further introduce on the Conquerable Stations. Stay tuned!